Caliban - WIP

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  11 November 2006
I'm not an anatomy fan, but you really captured my attention on this one.
Are you going to use muscle as influence on the skin for this one?
  11 November 2006
Garrettgjb - Thank you. I guess Caliban is the 16th Century's version of a mutant, a freak of nature.

Zenneth - Yes, the muscles and bones are going to drive a skin mesh. I want the character to be very lean so that the underlying shapes show through.

Since the last post I've been creating the limb muscles for the other side of the body. Now that they are all rigged up, I've been trying out character poses to see what needs adjusting and tweaking. Having such a tiny pelvis has been a bit of a pain - the thigh muscles tend to get muddled. Anyway, I'm working through the bugs slowly but surely.

Here are some screengrabs, fresh out of Max:

  11 November 2006
This looks amazing, no crits here, just enjoying something new
  11 November 2006
Looks awesome so far. Have you done this before? I'm not to clued up on max but i know in maya that its quiet a mission to do muscles. It Gets really slow the more influences you add. Not to mention that the skin or mesh deforms funky depending on the amount and placement of the influence objects you have. Can't wait to see some deformations. those poses look spectacular.
Have you done some drawings of what you want the character to look like?

What anatomy are you using? Have you looked at a frogs anatomy for the pelvis and leg muscles? maybe that will help. unless you had a look already. haha.
  11 November 2006
Very interesting work! I liked all this science of muscle and bones... This is a Leonardo da Vinci like method! What render will you choose for skin?
  11 November 2006
Hi Piek!

wow this is definitly very intresting project, i will keep eye on this for sure
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  11 November 2006
Mr James - Thanks for the comment! Hope all is going well with your guy.

Sinclair - I've done something slighty similar but it was with in-house tools. This'll be the first time I've tried to build a character using cgMuscle and cgSkin - I hope the latter is still available in the CGTalk store, otherwise I'm stuffed. So all in all it's a leap in the dark ;o)
Yes, I'm using frog anatomy as the basis but with human-like muscles. Frog muscles didn't give me enough interesting shapes.

Akira Hanzo - I've only got the default Max renderers, so I guess I'll be using the MR SSS material for the skin. Having said that, your beautiful renders make me want to try VRay. I love the look of your "under pressure" guy.

Staner - You might get eye strain as this project will take some time :o)

This is more of a technical update. I've sorted out the leg muscles now, although I'm sure I'll have to revisit them once the skin goes on. I can't really simulate thin tendons, so when the legs bend I'm having to push some muscles into the bone to get the knee shape. It's crude, but I can't think of a better way at the mo'. Swimming legs:

I've also started to rough out the chest muscles. I've built the "fan" of chest muscles like a humans but because my Caliban has short upper arms, a gap has opened up between the last set of pecs and the end of the sternum. I guess I could point the muscles down and at an angle like a horse/bat? Or leave it?

  11 November 2006
Wow, insane
Can't wait to see the skin wrapping this up

  11 November 2006
Still looking awesome man! On the legs though, it seems like the thighs are smaller in mass up near the pelvis than they are near the knee. Of course, it may be intended, heh.

As for the pec's, I've never used a muscle system, so I don't really know... but you may be able to get away with not having one or two of those bottom muscle strands in there...

rock on!
  11 November 2006
hey piek!

wow, seems like an very intresting and ambitious project. really curious about the outcome of it, but i'm sure if you keep on going as of now it will be killer stuff.
i'll keep an eye on this for sure.

btw. do you have any picts/concepts of the model?

  11 November 2006
very nice and looks like you know a lot about muscles and their placement cant wait to see more updates.
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  12 December 2006
Pussycat - Thank you. Yes, that's the bit I'm looking forward to.

Unicron - Spot on! The muscles are thicker nearer the knees and elbows. It looks a bit Popeye, but I wanted to make them a little more frog-like - I've uploaded some of the animal reference pictures I'm using.

Abyss103 - Thanks. I've got some rough thumbnails that, in a good light, you could call concepts. I'll post them once I get a my scanner up and running.

Younglion - I wish I knew more about anatomy; it's like one endless puzzle.

I bought cgSkin and after doing some tests, I need to revise some of my thinking. That's not say it's not good - it is an amazing bit of kit, user friendly and super fast; it's just that my setup won't get the best out of it. I've rigged my muscles in such a way that they slide over each other, but it looks like cgSkin can only snap the skin to what it initially sees. So when a previously hidden muscle part rises to the surface, it has no influence. Have any cgSkin users got some handy tips?

Here's a screengrab of a quick test I did. The skin is just a 'conformed' cylinder, wrapped around the knee section. There's no skinning, all that's driving it are bones and muscles.

Some of my reference pictures.

  12 December 2006
Wow, this is wonderful stuff.

Only quck C&C as you are probably refining a lot right now. The joint movement on the leg doesn't seem to look right to me quite yet. It seems more "muscley" than rigid. I would like to see the patella stay a bit more solid while the muslces and skin move around it. Right now it seems like it all bend around the knee, including the patella.

just my 2 cents. Keep it up, this is an awesome workflow!
"Job offers currently being accepted" -Me :)

Current Wip:
  12 December 2006
Totally awesome! keep it up !
  12 December 2006
wow. looking great! i see your losing a bit of volume at the back of the leg. or is it just me? and i agree. the knee should bulge out. but for the 1st time seeing some deformation. this is looking sweet. hehe. i also like the amount of detail the leg has. just from a wrap. really cool.

what is that picture of that thing on the top right?

I modelled a character similar to yours awhile ago. so this is really cool cause i want to put muscles in the bugger as well. eventually.

thanks for keeping me inspired!
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